Antonio Romero

Head of Innovation Unit - Regional Development Agency, Region of Murcia (Spain)

Mr. Romero is the Head of Innovation Unit in the Regional Development Agency, Region of Murcia (Spain), which is organically attached to the Regional Ministry of Employment, Universities and Enterprises.

He has been working in the Agency for 20 years promoting innovation in companies. During the years 2000 to 2006 he coordinated a big scheme of grants related to the design, introduction of information technologies, development of products/process and introduction of management systems for SMEs.

He is also project evaluator in the Agency, with a recognized specialization in ICT because he is a telecommunications engineer. He has participated in several European projects in the field of innovation. He has managed the design and implementation of the Innovation Voucher Programme of the Region of Murcia in 2009 (PYME+i project) and Cheque TIC Pilot Project in 2013. During 2016, a new series of voucher schemes for enterprises are being launched to boost innovacion in the Region.

At current, he is the project leader of INNOVOUCHER (http://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/196415_en.html), a UE-cofinanced 36-month project to develop a European Label for Innovation Voucher programmes, by defining a new model of innovation voucher programme supporting the transnational exchange of innovation services, and the procedures of the award of the European Label to those programmes complying with the defined model.

Instituto de Fomento de la Región de Murcia - INFO - is the name of Murcia's Regional Development Agency, which is organically attached to the Regional Ministry of Employment, Universities and Enterprises. The main objective of INFO is to boost the development of SMEs in Murcia by means of economic promotion, investment raising, elimination of obstacles and the establishment of an environment favoring competitiveness.

One of the main objectives of the development agency is to ensure the upgrading and economic growth of regional SMEs by means of the following lines of work:
▪ Promote technological development by cooperating to ensure that each company can access the technology that best suits its needs.
▪ Boost international corporate expansion through the Foreign Trade Promotion Plan.
▪ Promote investment, development and enlargement projects by providing companies inside and outside the region with information, consultancy and counseling services.
▪ Help finance business projects concerning investment in assets, quality, technology, internationalization and industrial equipment.